Tenille Upsets Emma in Dublin

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Round 1 Results for Cannon Kirk Homes Irish Open 2011 | 11 – 16 April | Dublin | $26K

[8] Manuela Manetta (ITA) bt. Orla Noom (NED) 7/11, 11/6, 11/7, 11/7 (38 mins)
[3] Jaclyn Hawkes (NZL) bt.[Q] Lauren Siddall (ENG) 11/6, 11/3, 11/7 (24 mins)
[7] Dominique Lloyd-Walter (ENG) bt.[Q] Heba El Torky (EGY) 11/4, 11/13, 4/11, 13/11, 12/10 (78 mins)
[1] Madeline Perry (IRE) bt. Line Hansen (DEN) 11/3, 12/10, 11/4 (28 mins)
[Q] Tenille Swartz (RSA) bt. [5] Emma Beddoes (ENG) 11/9, 11/4, 6/11, 6/11, 11/4 (55 mins)
[6] Aisling Blake (IRE) bt. Kylie Lindsay (NZL) 11/7, 11/4, 11/6 (26 mins)
[4] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) bt. Victoria Lust (ENG) 11/5, 11/2, 11/3 (20 mins)
[2] Vanessa Atkinson (NED) bt. [Q] Lisa Aitken (SCO) 11/2, 15/13, 11/9 (25 mins)

*Squash Stars Ambassadors

Manu and Jaclyn Sail Through to the Quarters

Jac & Lauren

First on the women’s court today were two fairly experienced players, Squash Stars Ambassador Manuela Manetta from Italy and Orla Noom from the Netherlands, promising a good start to the day. Orla took an early 2/0 lead, Manuela then led 3/2, Orla then moved into a 5/3 lead and gradually moved up to lead 10/6, game ball. Manuela saved the first game ball but Orla won the next point to take the game 11/7. Manuela then moved up a gear and although Orla stayed close, Manuela took the next three games 11/6, 11/7, 11/7.

Next on the women’s court was No 3 seed Jaclyn Hawkes from New Zealand, now living in Halifax, Yorkshire, playing Yorkshire girl Lauren Siddall, at present living in South Africa, who won through qualifying yesterday. As expected, Lauren played with true Yorkshire grit but found it a step too far against the silky smooth play of Jaclyn, and although she fought to the end, saving two match balls in the third, went down in three games 11/6, 11/3 and 11/7.

The 78-Minute Squashathon!

Third match on the women’s court, young Egyptian star Heba El Torky, who has just got up to #35 in the rankings, and come through qualifying, was matched against No 7 seed Dominique Lloyd-Walter, the experienced English player who had recently dropped down the rankings to #44 due to along injury lay off late last year. Dominique showed from the start that she has now got over her injury problem, her movement around the court was back to the best I have seen her for some time, and she whizzed through the first game to win 11/4. The youngster Heba then started to get to the pace of the game, and the score moved steadily up to 4/4, , then Dominique led 7/4 and 8/5, however Heba went on a good run of points to lead 9/8, was level at 10/10, then served out to take the game 13/11. Dominique seemed to start to tire a little in the third and Heba stepped on the gas to win the game 11/4.

Heba carried on in the same way in the fourth, stretching out to a 7/2 lead, but then Dominique showed her experience in keeping a cool head whilst Heba was getting very upset with some of the referee’s calls, and she pulled back to level at 8/8. Heba however got to match ball at 10/8, but again due to getting herself upset, allowed Dominique to get to game ball at 11/10, Heba levelled at 11/11, but once again Dominique showed her experience and maturity, kept her head and took the game 13/11, to level the match  2 – 2.

The final game was cut and thrust, both players making great use of the court and playing some lovely shots. Dom went 3/3 up, Heba led 5/3, Dom levelled at 5/5 then they went point for point up to 9/9 – still either one’s match. Dominique got the first match ball, 10/9, Heba levelled at 10/10, Dominique got another match ball at 11/10, then with a no let call going against Heba, Dominique took the game 12/10 and the match 12/10. A great match for the spectators, though I don’t think the players would agree.

The Line Stops Here for Line* (*pronounced as LI-NA)

Final match in the first half for the women saw Ireland’s favourite Madeline Perry, just recently raised to the dizzy heights of No 3 in the world rankings, and No 1 seed and outright favourite to win this tournament, against the experienced Dane Line Hansen, ranked #30. Madeline showed why she has risen so high by storming through the first game, winning 11/3. Line showed us then how well she can play, staying level all the way through the second game and in fact taking the first game ball at 10/9, however Madeline then let us all know why she is at #3 by taking three straight points to win the game 12/10. Line looked as though she had put everything into that second game, as Madeline raced into a 5/2 lead, then 9/3, Line stopped the spell with 1 point but then just could not stop Madeline from winning the game 11/4 and the match 3 games to nil.

Tenille Outwits Emma

The second half started immediately, matches running slightly behind schedule, and this next match did not help matters, taking 55 minutes before a decision was made. Qualifier Tenille Swartz from South Africa, ranked #47, was playing Emma Beddoes from England, ranked #24 and seeded No 5 for this tournament, and Tenille caused the biggest upset of the day. In the first game Tenille took an early lead 6/2, then 8/5, and got first game ball at 10/7. Emma saved two match points but Tenille took the last point to win 11/9. Emma seemed really out of sorts in the second and Tenille eased her way to an 11/4 win. Emma came right back into the match in the third, taking a 3/1 lead then moving up to 8/4. Tenille then took the next two points but Emma served out to win the game 11/6. Emma fought really strongly again in the next, taking a good 7/3 lead, getting game ball at 10/4, lost the next two points but eventually served out to win 11/6, and a deciding game to come. Again in the final game Emma seemed out of sorts and Tenille 7/3 lead, Emma could only get one more point before Tenille took the game 11/4 and the match 3 – 2. Splendid match giving us the first big upset of the day.

Business as Usual for Aisling, Nour and Vanessa

Our witty Ambassador, Aisling Blake is crowd favourite.

No6 seed and WR #26, the local club favourite Aisling Blake now came on court with lots of interest from the crowd, and she was playing Kylie Lindsay from New Zealand. Kylie led early on 3/0, Aisling then got into her stride and took a 9/5 lead, Kylie took two points but Aisling got the next two to win 11/7. From 2/2 in the second, Aisling showed her strength to move to 8/2 in the lead, Kylie got another two points but that was it, Aisling served out brilliantly to win 11/4. Similar pattern in the third with Aisling taking a 3/0 lead, Kylie pulling back to 3/4, but then Aisling hung in to go 8/3 up, Kylie took a couple, Aisling got two more to go10/5 game ball, Kylie saved one but Aisling served out to win 11/6and the match 3 – 0 in 26 minutes. A good win for the local lass who is such a crowd favourite here at Fitzwilliam.

No 4 seed Nour El Tayeb from Egypt, No 4 seed and ranked #20 faced English girl Victoria Lust, ranked #38, and just back from a fine victory in the British Under 23 Championship. Despite that victory, Vicky battled bravely as she always does but found the 18 year old Nour much too strong for her and went down 11/5, 11/2 and 11/3.

The final match on the women’s court was the qualifier Lisa Aitken from Scotland, who had played ever so well during qualifying, up against No 2 seed and former World No 1 Vanessa Atkinson, the Dutch player now based in Leeds with the wonderful James Willstrop. Lisa unfortunately was so outplayed in the first game and Vanessa took the game comfortably 11/2. The second game was much better from Lisa’s view, she stayed close with Vanessa throughout the game and only lost out 15/13 in the end. Again in the third Lisa stayed with the score up to 9/9, but then Vanessa showed her experience and served out for 11/9 and a 3 – 0 match score.

That was eventually the end of a great day of squash, and there will be lots more tomorrow.

Reporting from Dublin, Arthur Curran

Post-match games :)

Tomorrow in the Quarter finals:
14:00 [1] Madeline Perry (IRL) v [8] Manuela Manetta (ITA)
16:00 [3] Jaclyn Hawkes (NZL) v [7] Dominique Lloyd-Walter (ENG)
18:00 [Q] Tenille Swartz (RSA) v [4] Nour El Tayeb (EGY)
20:00 [6] Aisling Blake (IRL) v [2] Vanessa Atkinson (NED)

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